Walker Art Center


February 03, 2003

science or mystery

A new reality show aired today for the first time: a group of psychiatric patients is invited to a Big Brother home where they will be followed by camera's night and day. Some of them will be given placebo’s, others get their normal dose of drugs. Every week the ones getting placebo's change. By placing bets on who is on their normal dose of psycho-pharmaceuticals and who is on placebo’s the audience donate money to a good cause: brain research, halfway home’s etc. During broadcast a psychiatrist interprets every move the patients make and every word they utter. After the first run a documentary was shown about the working of the human brain called ‘science or mystery’.

Why did I watch it, I keep asking myself. I did not watch the original Big Brother when it aired here (for the first time ever, Holland is the BB home). When someone explained me what it was all about, I knew enough. I watched the people at work with a curiosity that could easily be compared to that of someone doing research on a tribe in some terra incognito: observe, but do not interfere. But why then did I watch Jerry Springer, WWF and now this new BB version? Because I could not believe it, and yet I knew that this was the next logical step.

I have to write now. Two weeks from now I have to give a presentation to two programmers about my Spaghetti program, you know, the interactive schemes I talked about in my last post. I call them ractives, not the schemes, but that what the schemes are for: truly interactive action theatre story game something. It comes from a Neal Stephenson SciFi book I once read.

Outside the snow is almost gone, and the gras suddenly seems so much greener.

Posted by Jeroen Goulooze at February 3, 2003 09:33 AM

I didn't know BB did that....now I'm curious.

I've been a reality show junkie lately since Surreal Life just started airing in the US. MC Hammer, Emmanuel Lewis, Corey Feldman, Vince Neil (of Motley Crew), a playboy bunny, a chick from Survivor and the nerd girl from Beverly Hills 90210 all share a house for 10 days, with no phones, internet or anything. Brilliant concept. The show is an amazing cry for attention from washed up stars.

Posted by: Tony DuShane on February 3, 2003 01:54 PM
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